Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Foiling the Hackers

Well my World of Warcraft account got restored after being hacked. It's happening so much lately that the WoW folks have a backlog of accounts to restore of more than a week.

All's well that ends well I guess. I got a much needed week off from the game, and my guild and I got all...well, most of our stuff back.

In the meantime, I got a mobile authenticator. It's a cool little dongle that generates a new code every 30 seconds that you must have to log in to my account. Hacker can keylog me all he wants, if he doesn't have the exact same mobile authentication code generated by the unique one associated with my account, he can't get in. It's not completely un-hackable, but it sure makes things difficult. And usually that's enough.

It's very cool, and I love using technology to thwart would-be evildoers. It made me think, I wish I had something like that on my poker accounts, since that's real money and all and I have had my account stolen before.

I checked at Full Tilt Poker and sho-nuff! They have mobile authenticators! Sweet! Waitasec, not so sweet. As far as I can tell the only way to get one is to buy one from their online store, which only takes Full Tilt Points. You need 5000 points to get an authenticator, and I only have 3200 or so after my latest jersey purchase late last year. At the baby stakes I play, 5000 points takes a long time to earn.

The WoW authenticator cost a MASSIVE Six dollars and fifty cents, including shipping. FTP wants 5000 Full Tilt Points? Are they in the poker business or the "ripping off our customers so they can be safe" business? You can get a T-shirt for 1500 points, but a $7 plastic authenticator costs 5000?

Not to mention that you have no choice but to play real money at risk until you earn enough points to order this security "option" which I don't consider very optional these days.

Maybe I'm just an idiot and I can't find the way to buy one of these for cash on their website. If anyone knows of a way to do it, please let me know in the comments.

If not, shame on you Full Tilt Poker.

Edit: I just checked PokerStars. They want 4500 VIP points. Same deal, no way to pay cash for it as far as I can tell.

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